Friday, December 3, 2010

30 Days of Skating - Day 15: Predict Gold Medalists for 2014

 It's really not possible to predict that at this point - we're not even quite halfway through this skating season, and the 2010 Olympics were just 10 months ago. But if I had to attempt an educated guess as to who will win in Sochi, I'd say...

Men: Daisuke Takahashi (if he stays in and healthy), Patrick Chan (the judges ADORE him), or maybe Florent Amodio, Adam Rippon, or Takahiko Kozuka. (I would have put Nobunari Oda as well, but he'll probably do too many combinations or something *sigh*).

Ladies: Hahaha... that is probably the hardest one to predict. But if Yu-Na Kim gives it another go, she'd probably have an excellent chance, maybe Mao Asada if her jump technique tweaking pays off, Kanako Murakami, or one of the young Russian girls that are still in juniors (since everyone is raving about them.).

Pairs: Savchenko and Szolkowy seem like a good bet at this point, especially because I don't believe that Pang and Tong will keep competing for that long (I really thought that I heard they were retiring after this past Olympic season!). Sui and Han might be in the mix, as well as a handful of up and coming Russian teams and Kavaguti and Smirnov.

Ice Dance: Davis and White are definitely one that I can see winning gold in a few years (with good programs, of course.). They haven't dominated in quite the fashion people thought they would this season, but they have several years to work out any kinks in their skating and they are still young for a top ice dancing team. Virtue and Moir, the reigning Olympic gold medalists, can't be counted out either, if they decide to stay in and her surgery pays off. I'm also keeping my eye on the Shibutanis, Crone and Poirier, and Weaver and Poje.

All in all though, these are all just guesses on recent seasons and this one thus far. I'm sure we'll see quite a bit of up and comers taking names, especially in ladies and ice dance.


Nena said...

A lot of these people might not still be around by 2014. Daisuke is retiring after worlds and I don't know if Nobu will even make the Olympic team by then.

Adelina or Elizaveta are the most likely to win gold in Sochi since they are already better than most of the senior ladies.

Russian teams will probably win pairs and ice dance since it is in Russia after all and they have plenty of good teams.

Lisa said...

I think I read that Daisuke is taking it one year at a time, but that he definitely wanted to do Worlds this year because it's in Tokyo, but that he would decide about the future after that. Him retiring is a distinct possibility, but as a fan, I'm definitely hoping that he stays in.

Nobunari has all the skills to make the next Olympics and he is still young, my only concerns about him are that he isn't very artistic, and he forgets to count combos, time after time. With Hanyu (and maybe Machida) coming up, he needs to be more careful.

I haven't seen either of those Russian girls, but I know they've done well on the junior Grand Prix. If they mature well, they definitely could be a factor in Sochi.

I'm not sure about Russia winning pairs or ice dance, but the odds of a team medaling are extremely high in their own country. I just hope that whoever deserves it, wins it.

Nena said...

Whether he retires or not after Worlds depends on his performance. If he wins with a great performance then he'll retire. If he wins with a not-so-great performance or doesn't win at all, then he might continue for a while longer.

The JSF seems to want Hanyu to be their next great star and don't seem to care much about Oda so I don't know what will happen to him.

Adelina Sotnikova still has a higher total score than any of the ladies on the Grand Prix. She can do a great 3lz-3t and so can Elizaveta. And of course, Liza has a 3a but hasn't done it in competition yet. When it comes to artistry, Adelina is really pretty skater. Elizaveta's coach is Mishin so I'm not really a fan of her skating. If these two girls can survive puberty then I expect them to dominate once they move up to seniors.

For ice dance, Russia has a junior team, Monko/Khaliavin, who still has one of the highest scores this season. They already get huge PCS and I have no idea why they stayed junior this year. Even though everyone's been talking about Elena and Nikita, I think Monko/Khaliavin will be Russia's top team by Sochi.

It's too hard to tell for pairs. There could be so many injuries between now and Sochi. But I'm sure there will be a Russian and a Chinese team on the podium.